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The Rev. S. SHERIDAN WILSON was born at Manchester, in 1795. He became a member of the Church, under Mr. Roby, of that place, and was educated at Gosport, for the Missionary work. He was ordained in the year 1819, and went abroad, to Malta, in December of that year, in the Starling. The vessel has since been lost in the Black Sea. It was almost lost, with Mr. Wilson, off the Bay, where St. Paul was wrecked; but though much broken, only one man perished, who was an Italian, of the name of Neno. Mr. W. married in November, 1818, to Miss Weldon, of Litchfield. In Malta, he has a school of 400 Maltese. He preaches three times a week to the English there, besides a little in Greek, and a little in Italian. He has translated several tracts into Greek, and some larger works, Bogue's Essay,
Vol. IX. No. 4.
Doddridge's Rise and Progress of Religion, a Treatise
on Redemption, another small one on Prayer, Bunyan's Pilgrim, as far as the 70th page, with Burder's Notes, and a fourth of Bickersteth's Scripture Help. He has also composed a 'Odnyos tov Aidaoxalov Teacher's Guide, which he will shortly print. He has circulated about 3,000 tracts, in Greek, Spanish, Italian, French, Hebrew, and English. Mr. W. returned to England, in July, 1822. His future plans are printing, and preaching, and setting up schools.
CURIOUS FACTS RELATIVE TO THE COMMENCEMENT OF THE REV. DR. MORRISON'S MISSION IN CHINA.
From Dr. Milne's Retrospect.
Dr. M. sailed from England, for China, January 31, 1807, together with the Rev. Messrs. Gordon and Lee, Missionaries, from the Missionary Society, in a vessel bound to India, by way of America. He remained twenty days in the United States. During that time, he enjoyed the acquaintance of several eminent ministers and pious persons of various denominations; some of whom still correspond with bim on the common concerns of the kingdom of Christ, and of general Jiterature. This short acquaintance was the means of engaging the prayers and influence of many Christians,
America, in behalf of the Chinese Mission: they have ever since manifested a peculiar interest in its concerns. It is to be hoped that the growing commerce and intercourse of that rising nation with China, will afford its Christians many opportunities of taking a still more active part in the diffusion of the Gospel therein. Mr. M.'s first object, as pointed out by the Missionary Society, was the acquisition of the Chinese Language; even then, a Dictionary, English and Chinese, was contemplated in his instructions. On this account, before leaving America, the Honourable Mr. Maddison, then Secretary of State, gave him a letter of introduction to the Americau Consul, at Canton, Mr. Carrington, requesting him to do what lay in his power, to further what he conceived to be for the benefit of general literature.
Before leaving England, it had been suggested, that Mr. M. should go by way of Bengal; but, desirous to reach the scene of his labours as soon as possible, he preferred going directly to China, in an American vessel, sailing from Philadelphia.
On the 4th of September, the same year, he arrived in China. Having never been in foreign parts before, and being a perfect stranger to every one in the place; knowing also the jealousy of the Chinese, and the bigotry of certain Europeans, he had not the most encouraging prospect before him. Confiding, however, in the mercy
gracious Providence of God, he was not depressed. He landed at Macao, with the mate of the ship, who went on shore for a pilot, and returned next day. He was soon known to be an English Missionary, and for a time occupied the suspicions and tongues of the Romish Clergy. At Canton, during that season, he lived in what is called a go-down, a lower room, generally occupied as a cellar, where he studied, ate, and slept. Having very few and imperfect helps, he laboured incessantly at the language, and with very little success. In consequence of the letter from the Secretary
State, in America, to Mr. Carrington, he and several other American gentlemen, shewed him much civility, which proved a relief to his mind and spirits, after fagging hard all day with an ignorant person, from whom he endeavoured to acquire a little knowledge of the Canton dialect. Messrs. Milner and Bull, who acted for Mr. Woolcomb, of New York, at the request of that gentleman, received him into their own factory.
At first, be supposed that it would greatly facilitate his object, to live in the manner of the natives, and under this idea, he supplied himself with such articles as are commonly used by the Chinese in dress, and at meals: but he shortly perceived that his idea was erroneous. To make himself remarkable in external appearance would have been proclaiming to the Chinese, that he was not in circumstances similar to those of other foreigners at Canton; and that he had objects different from those of commerce, which is the only one sanctioned by the local and general authorities. Again, as religion does not consist in the form or colour of one's dress, he not only declined assuming a native dress, but also did not make a point of it to be always dressed in black; the white jacket and straw hat were worn as other Europeans do in warm climates.'
* At first, as above observed, be ate in the Chinese manner; and dined with the person who taught him the language. His mode of living was most rigidly economical. A lamp, made of earthenware, supplied him with light; and a folio volume of Matthew Henry's Commentary, set up on its edge, afforded a shade to prevent the wind from blowing out the lamp. He did not find, however, that dining with a native increased his knowledge of the language; in the time of taking